I often get asked what’s the best part is about being an MP. I suppose people will look at we do in the House of Commons as a guide but to be honest what you see in the Chamber is about 5% of the work we do. The real work takes place outside the Chamber or in the Constituency and I have to say that the best part of my job is coming home to Kirkby every week and spending time visiting schools, businesses, and constituents. Just a few weeks ago I ran a competition to take two people to London to spend a day with their MP. The lucky winners were Scott and Jane who travelled down with me in my car early on a Monday morning. During the three- and half-hour journey both Jane and Scott quizzed me non-stop about my role as an MP. I suppose we can become complacent in our role and take things for granted but there is no chance of that when you surround yourself with normal folk who are not in the Westminster Bubble. It was great answering their questions and giving them an insight as to what makes me tick and how I do my job. There is no training to be an MP, you just pick it up as you go along making a few mistakes on the way and in my case get in bother a few times with the media who are lurking around every corner looking to trip you up. But you must remember just a few years ago many of us new MPs were doing normal jobs and I personally had never been to the House of Commons in my life until two days after I was elected. When I arrived in Westminster with Scott and Jane, I took them into my office on Whitehall to show them where I worked and after a quick cuppa, I took them on a tour of the estate which involves travelling through Westminster Hall, The House of Lords and The House of Commons and then off for another cuppa on the famous Terrace overlooking the Thames. It’s a great day out and it proved so successful that I going to make these days out a regular occurrence and the next couple to spend a day with me are Pauline and Gary who were drawn out at random. They will join me one Monday before the summer recess.
On Saturday I visited 17-year-old Caitlin Smithurst from Ashfield who will now be in Canada competing in the World Championships for Synchronised Ice Skating. What a wonderful achievement for this brilliant young lady who has trained for years to get to this level. I know her mum, dad and sister are incredibly proud of Caitlin and will be rooting for her whilst she is away. But one thing is for sure: Caitlin is already a winner and whatever happens in Canada this young lady will come back having done something that most people just dream about. Well, done young lady.